In less than an hour it will be my 50th birthday, a day I have been thinking about for months maybe even years. Me, fifty years old? How did that happen? I blinked and a half century went by without my even noticing. So what has become of my twenty, thirty, forty-year-old self? Quite frankly, nothing. She’s still here, stuck at around twenty-seven and a half on serious days. She can go down to fifteen on sillier days.
But what will she be like at fifty?
I’m hoping that the changes will be on the outside only. Of course there have already been major exterior changes over the years. My grey hair drags me to the hairdresser’s every eight weeks, suicidally screaming “Dye me, dye me”. I wear trifocals that must only be removed to sleep or to shower. The removal of the glasses in the bathroom, however, certainly helps to avoid seeing the wrinkles and brown age spots on my face. The tops of my arms are flabby, my bum sags, I have a muffin top which rolls over my jeans and I can no longer just bleach the moustache to camouflage the creepy Hitler look, the tweezers have had to be called in to assist.
But who cares about the outside? On the inside I’m still myself, childishly delighting in the little things that life offers – sunrises, sunsets, funny cloud formations and colours, the first buds on the trees, daisies, birds pecking in the grass, butterflies, purring cats, the first cup of tea of the day, the smell of fresh bread, sister-made raspberry jam, clean sheets, a silly joke, an impromptu dance, a quick sing-song or a walk in the park.
Strangely I have been waiting for this big birthday to start writing again, setting down on paper my thoughts and feelings, likes and dislikes. I have an overwhelming urge to fish up moments of a lifetime to look at them and laugh or look at them and cry.
This will not be an adventure story or a how-to-be-fifty manual for thickos.
Writing about myself and my life as a fifty-year-old woman, who is a big jumbled-up mixture of wife, mother, daughter, sister, aunt, great-aunt, niece, cousin, colleague, in-law, friend and aquaintance, will simply be a hugely self-indulgent and pleasurable experience that I can’t wait to get my teeth into.
It’s almost midnight. Five, four, three, two, one…
Oh my God I’m fifty!
(These musings were first scribbled in a bedside journal in the middle of March this year. I simply wanted to set the scene for this blog. No need to send cards, flowers or gifts today. Next year maybe?)